So, you want to be a recruiter? We don’t blame you! Being the person to help someone land their dream and helping a company fill their needed roles can be highly rewarding! However, there’s a lot more to recruiting than just matchmaking and not everyone is cut out for the role. There is a lot to consider before you take the leap into recruiting, but a little advice can go a long way. At Xtreme we are loaded with some of the best recruiters in the game, so I’ve gathered their best pieces of advice for what it takes to be a top recruiter!

You need to be able to ask questions and really listen to the answer. The role requires getting to know candidates and being able to dissect what they are really good at and what they are looking for in order to play matchmaker. - Greg Rankich, CEO

A career in recruiting is going to be an emotional rollercoaster!  At times it’s going to feel easy and incredibly rewarding.  At other times, wins will be hard to come by and you better have thick skin and be able to deal with rejection. The best Recruiters won’t get too high and won’t get too low.  Stay consistent with your effort and your long-term outlook on what success should feel like. - Dale Johns, President

It’s a numbers game!  Recruiting is a high activity, high output job. Lots of phone calls, lots of emails, lots of time behind the computer sourcing for candidates.  Those who hustle the most, have a high sense of urgency and are consistent in their output, will win the most. The best Recruiters embrace that they are a salesperson.  They must be competitive like a salesperson, be goal oriented like a salesperson and realize that their success metrics are numbers. Number of phone calls, emails, interviews, offers and most importantly the number of successful hires. It’s all about the numbers. - Dale Johns, President   

Communicate ~ Be Responsive! This seems to be the #1 pet peeve of both hiring managers and candidates.  Communication is the key in every great relationship….and that is what good recruiters do, build relationships.  Even if the news is not so good, people want to know what is going on.  Managers want acknowledgement that their request or question has been received.  Even if you don’t have the answer, a simple “hey there, working on your question, will get back to you soon with an answer,” goes a very long way in building a relationship. - Randall Hopkins, Managing Director

Get Organized. Recruiters are expected to juggle many things and people at once.  ATS and other databases need to be updated real time. There are many flavors of organization, but in the end, those with a solid system of keeping things front and center usually find the “administrative” part of recruiter less cumbersome and also have fewer things fall through the cracks. If you haven’t got a good system, leverage others on your team or seek advice from those in your network. Most ATS systems these days have pretty good reporting functionality. The reports that you generate, or others generate on your behalf depend on having the right data. - Randall Hopkins, Managing Director

Treat people the way you’d like to be treated.  If you say you are going to call someone, call them.  If someone reaches out to you, respond to them.  Practice common courtesy. Pick up the phone and make a personal connection with your candidates. Whenever possible, meet them in person. - Frank Smith, Managing Director

This is a very competitive field, so you need to be naturally competitive. You’re constantly competing for top talent and jobs! Relationship building is key in this industry. You MUST follow through with your candidates and clients to maintain good relationships. You also need to be inquisitive. You’ll spend a majority of your career learning about what people want, what they don’t want and what they are good at. Naturally, if you’re asking questions… you need to listen – like really listen. - Melissa Potera, Technical Talent Acquisition Lead

Make sure that you have a decent network built up, and that you are a natural networker. Many of the best candidates come from referrals, or from your network, rather than external sources. - Michelle Hamman, Lead Talent Acquisition Consultant

Talk to other recruiters and sourcers and ask them about their day; what it looks like, how many people they talk to, how they build relationships, etc. to see if it's something they'd enjoy doing. there are several types of recruiters and sourcers, it's important to talk to a few from different industries and disciplines to really get a good idea of what it entails. - Michelle Hamman, Lead Talent Acquisition Consultant

Great Recruiters are curious by nature and have fungible ability to quickly adapt to any position they are working on.  The best Recruiters and constantly learning, researching, and looking for ways to deliver results in a timely manner. - Todd Johnson, Sr. Business Development Manager

Technology has made it easy to find candidates on the internet, but the best Recruiters know how to identify, attract, connect, and deliver value to each candidate they work with. If you are passionate about connecting and helping people, Recruiting is a great field to get involved in. - Todd Johnson, Sr. Business Development Manager

Recruiting has a lot of ups and downs and to always remember that if you continue to work hard good things will happen. It’s also all about building strong relationships and growing a network. A good Recruiter should always treat his consultants the way they would treat family and friends and they will go far. - Steven Tenure, Business Development Manager

The competition is exciting — if you are competitive, as a recruiter you will realize that filling each job is a head-to-head competition that can be energizing. You will be the face of the company — you will be the first and in some cases the only contact that applicants have with your organization. Recruiters have the opportunity on a daily basis to interact with hiring managers and executives in all levels of the organization. As a result, not only will you get to know them personally, but they will see the quality of your work directly. - Neha Mehrotra, Talent Acquisition Consultant

Being a recruiter is a lot easier for outgoing, extroverted people lovers, so be prepared and willing to make calls to complete strangers! Don’t be afraid to add a personal touch. Some people might say it could come off as unprofessional, but I’ve gotten a ton of positive comments from my candidates when I remember personal details about their family or birthdays and such, so I’m sure to include that in my messages to them. - Erynne Hundley, Talent Acquisition Consultant


We hope that this post gave you some insight into the world of recruiting. If you’re interested in becoming a recruiter, let’s chat! We have a talent acquisition team dedicated to hiring recruiters at all stages of their careers, from junior-level to C-level and executives. We call it R4R, or Recruiting for Recruiters. This niche market is booming and we are actively placing candidates at some of the biggest companies in the nation. If you’re looking for a new challenge as a consultant or internal recruiter, apply with us today and come join the Xtreme Team!

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Topics: Staffing & Hiring

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ABOUT Kailin Chase

Kailin works as a part of the Marketing Team, focusing on our Xtreme Cares program, graphic design, social media, and corporate event planning. Outside of Xtreme she enjoys paddle boarding, travel, all things with cinnamon, and spending time with her husband and her two spaniels.
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